Published: Thu, March 29, 2018
Culture | By Glenn Strickland

Japan PM Abe likely to meet President Trump on April 18

Japan PM Abe likely to meet President Trump on April 18

His finance minister, Taro Aso, echoed that view and said some of responsibility for the trade imbalance rested with the United States.

Former National Tax Agency chief Nobuhisa Sagawa raises his hand to testify under oath during a House of Representatives Budget Committee meeting, on March 27, 2018.

Akie Abe has previously denied involvement with Moritomo Gakuen but later stepped down as honorary principal at the foundation's planned elementary school following news reports of the 2016 land sale.

Obama and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also visited Hawaii's Pearl Harbor in a show of reconciliation between the two former wartime foes.

When asked about the deletion of key words in the documents, including Akie Abe's name, Sagawa declined to answer questions.

While Sagawa did not touch on whether he was involved in the doctoring of the documents, he insisted that they were tampered with at the Financial Bureau, denying involvement of the prime minister or those around him.

Protesters hold placards reading

The Finance Ministry has conceded that 14 documents related to the cut-price land transaction were altered between late February and April a year ago after officials at the Financial Bureau ordered its regional bureau in Osaka to do so and insisted Sagawa having played a key role.

Sagawa told lawmakers several times in 2017 that sale price had been correctly calculated and that there was no evidence that there had been any political interference.

The opposition camp, however, are gearing up to summon Akie Abe and others to give testimony soon in a legitimate bid to conclude the protracted scandal that has seen the approval rating for Abe's cabinet plummeting, according to recent media polls. The Finance Ministry has admitted it doctored documents relating to the transaction.

"North Korea is a real threat", Obama, who is now visiting Japan as part of a four-nation tour of Asia and Oceania, said at an global forum in Tokyo hosted by a private organization.

The row has battered Abe's popularity and called into question whether he can still win a party leadership contest this September and become Japan's longest-serving prime minister.

The liberal TV Asahi's poll Monday said public support dropped by 11.7 percentage points to 32.6 percent.

Uber agrees to sell its Southeast Asian operations to Grab
As part of the acquisition, Uber will take a 27.5 per cent stake in Grab and Uber's CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi , will join the board. Grab said it plans to expand its food delivery business to Singapore and Malaysia after integrating it with Uber Eats .

McConnell backs full legalization of hemp while in Kentucky
While in his home state of Kentucky, McConnell announced he will introduce a bill to legalize hemp as an "agricultural commodity". He also anticipates meeting with US Attorney General Jeff Sessions to make sure he understands the bill's intentions.

Rahul Gandhi lashes out at JDS, calls it "Janata Dal Sangh Parivar"
Hanumanthaiah got 44 and Hussain 42, while BJP's Rajeev Chandrashekar bagged 50, the highest among the four contestants. The BJP, too, will improve its tally in the House but at the expense of the JD (S) and not that of the Congress.

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